Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. What influenced life in the island societies of Polynesia?
(a) The environment
(b) The closeness to North America
(c) The tropical climate on all islands
(d) Trade with Europeans

2. Independent food production began in how many places?
(a) Only one place on each continent
(b) A few
(c) Only one
(d) Many places

3. How does Diamond explain the mass extinction of large mammals in some areas?
(a) Humans killed or indirectly eliminated them.
(b) The ice age
(c) Germs introduced by humans
(d) A large large comet hit the earth.

4. Studies have failed to show differences in what among people on different continents?
(a) Norms
(b) Ethnicity
(c) Race
(d) Intelligence

5. Why did it take people longer to cultivate fruit tress?
(a) They were rare.
(b) They had longer growing periods before harvest.
(c) Their production was low.
(d) They were too easy to cultivate.

Short Answer Questions

1. What axis is most conducive to the spread of food production?

2. What infectious disease played a role in the European conquest of the Americas?

3. Why were the Europeans not affected by the infectious diseases that they brought to places like the Americas and Australia?

4. The arrival of humans on many of the continents coincided with what?

5. Why were domesticated plants able to spread from the Fertile Crescent to nearby areas more easily?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why do some scholars argue that Europeans expanded and conquered others but China did not?

2. What advantages did the Spanish have over the Incas?

3. How is the production of food related to the advantages of guns, germs, and steel?

4. What misconceptions exist about the transition from hunter-gatherers to food producers?

5. Why did Eurasia have an advantage in the domestication of animals?

6. Fourteen species of large mammals were domesticated. Why weren't other species?

7. How is climate used as an explanation for the uneven distribution of wealth and power?

8. What are some reasons why hunter-gatherers would adopt food production?

9. What are the four stages in how diseases are transferred from animals to humans?

10. Where did food production develop independently?

(see the answer keys)

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